Do I Have the Right to Install Piled Foundations on the Party Wall Line?

by The Party Wall Surveyor

Question

Are there any rights to install piled foundations (circa 6m deep) on the party line (the existing garden wall is to be knocked down and rebuilt as part of the extension).

In order to ensure the build runs smoother and we maintain a relationship with our neighbours we have compromised on design (will need amendment back into planning).  This compromise will be detailed within the consent letter that the neighbours send back.  Would we still be liable for the cost of a surveyor if they appointed one at a later date?

Answer

As the existing garden wall is being knocked down and replaced with the exterior wall of your extension it must be either a shared wall or in your ownership – either way you can place new foundations, piled or otherwise, on the boundary and project them on to the neighbour’s land if that is necessary.

Yes, if your neighbour has reason to appoint a surveyor at a later stage you will be responsible for that surveyor’s reasonable fee. The right to appoint surveyors after an initial consent was established in a recent court case. You can read a summary here - http://www.building.co.uk/legal/party-wall-act-good-news-for-good-neighbours/3118763.article

Follow-up

I was under the impression that I needed his consent to put ‘special foundations’ astride the line of junction; mu foundations are potentially 8m deep piles (likely reinforced).

Answer

Yes, special foundations below a party wall do require the Adjoining Owner’s consent. You should ask you neighbour to sign a letter of consent along these lines:

As owners of the above property we hereby consent to the construction of special (reinforced) foundations below the party wall between address/address in accordance with Section 7(4) of the Party Wall etc. Act 1996.